Tahiti Research

Update on my research in Tahiti: Visited Punaauia yesterday to sit down with some people at the Service de la Culture et du Patrimoine!  Snapped this photo on the way back to the bus stop.

Other news: A baby cyclone cruising through French Polynesia is dumping truckloads of rain on Tahiti.  It poured rain most of last night and today, it continues under a blanket of low, dark clouds.  Ick.  The one good thing about it is all the cool air!

Lost Tiki Update

French Polynesia’s department of culture has issued a plea for the return of the tiki head that disappeared in November from the ancient site of Upeke, in the valley of Taaoa, Hiva Oa.  Upeke is classified as an historic monument and protected by federal law.  The department statement reminds those who took the tiki that transporting objects from historic monuments is illegal and that the perpetrators could face up to 7 years in prison and a penalty of 100,000 Euros.

Read more in French here.

[Image from: http://tahitinui.blog.lemonde.fr/2013/01/06/disparition-de-la-tete-de-tiki-de-taaoa-communique-du-service-de-la-culture-et-du-patrimoine/#xtor=RSS-32280322]

Fundraising and Futsal

For the third consecutive year, the villages of Taiohae, Hatiheu and Taipivai participated in a futsal tournament in Taiohae, Nuku Hiva.  The team from Taiohae took the championship title.  On Hiva Oa, a fundraising event including traditional dance performances and a bake sale was organized to help finance a new roof for the Catholic Sacre-couer church in the village of Puamau.

L’équipe de Puamau :  mamans, jeunes du collège public  et de Sainte-Anne, ainsi que le diacre Jean-Jacques Tipahaehae, au centre. Ils n’ont pas ménagé leurs efforts pour offrir un beau spectacle  de danses traditionnelles.

(from: http://www.ladepeche.pf/iles/marquises)

New Development Projects

New development projects have been slated for Fatu Hiva and Tahuata, the two southern-most Marquesas Islands.  More specifically, two credit agreements (one for each island) were signed with the French Agency for Development (Agence francaise de developpement, or AFD) when the French High Commissioner visited Hiva Oa this week.

Read more in French here.

La signature des deux conventions entre Félix Barsinas, maire de Tahuata, Henri Tuieinui, maire de Fatu Hiva et au centre,  Frédéric Aubras directeur de l’AFD à Papeete. Le haut-commissaire Jean-Pierre Laflaquière et Anny Pietri, administratrice d’État aux Marquises étaient également présents.

(from: http://www.ladepeche.pf/iles/marquises)

AIDS Prevention in Nuku Hiva

High school students in Taiohae, Nuku Hiva celebrated international AIDS day last week collaborated with the officer for the promotion of health in the Marquesas, Stephanie Nouel, to help spread the word about AIDS.  Dressed in red and white, they stationed themselves outside the local technical academy to hand out condoms and educational pamphlets about AIDS that explain how the disease is transmitted, how it develops and how to protect yourself.

Read more in French here.

[from http://www.ladepeche.pf/article/marquises/nuku-hiva-prevention-du-sida]

Restored site in Taipivai

A giant tohua, or ceremonial dance platform, that was restored for a Marquesan festival in 2011 has now become a tourist attraction in the valley of Taipivai, Nuku Hiva.  Beautifully restored with reconstructed platforms, new locally carved stone tikis and traditional homes, the site stands as testament to the Marquesan cultural renaissance.

See more photos here.

taipivai 022

(from: http://www.oceanien.fr/article-taipivai-une-base-culturelle-112871816.html)

Documentary on Nuclear Testing

A new documentary film was aired on television throughout French Polynesia yesterday.  Essais Nucleaires: l’Heritage Sans Fin (Nuclear Testing: The Never-ending Legacy), by Thierry Derouet and Nathalie Barbe, provides a comprehensive look at the effects of nuclear tests on families fifteen years after testing ended.  The testing site was located on two tiny island in the Tuamotus, Moruroa and Fangataufa, but its influence extended throughout French Polynesia.  The Marquesas, like other outlying archipelagos, sent many fathers, sons and brothers to work at the testing site; some for over two decades.

Read more in French here.

(from: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151185899009531&set=a.269372924530.140583.248187279530&